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Dialogue in the Dark - Dinner with a Difference

We have all been to restaurants and have all been pleased with the food. In fact, today, if there is a decently popular restaurant - it would serve a good meal. That has become a baseline as that is what the business is. However, restaurants need to differentiate themselves in terms of the experience they offer to the guests - that is how you get people to the door now. While the trend is up about having a theme which merges the names on the menu, the interior, the decor, and the staff - however, it mostly seems cosmetic in nature and provides limited appeal. During our recent trip to Hyderabad, we had a chance to visit one restaurant which breaks from the league and offers a unique experience - right from when you enter the door. Let's talk about our experience at - Dialogue in the Dark! 

Mind you, this is not a review but an experience that we present to you in this article.

As we searched for a place to eat for one of our dinners, we stopped at this seemingly interesting place which offered something we hadn't had a chance to experience. Given that it was located in a shopping mall - The Inorbit Mall in Madhapur area - just a 10-minute drive away from our hotel made it an easy choice. We readied ourselves and ubered to the mall and climbed to the 5th-floor corner which said the name of the restaurant.



What is so special about it - you may ask.

This is a themed restaurant where the entire concept is pretty novel and interesting. The food is served in complete darkness as you may guess from the name of the restaurant. The idea is that the entire staff at the place is blind and they invite guests to experience what it is to live in pitch dark world. Interested huh!

Here is more - our experience at the place

We reached the restaurant's front desk by around 8 in the night and there was already a hustle there. We imagined that it was a popular place and hence a wait was on the cards. There was a small wait but the hustle was on a different thing itself (let's get to it in a bit). Once you approach the front desk, the staff asks you for your choice of meal - there are four choices in all - a snacks platter or a full meal with an option of vegetarian or non-vegetarian fare. The menu for each choice is fixed and the meal is served on your table. After quick deliberation, we opted for a vegetarian snacks platter - partly because of the fear of unknown. We were not sure of how the experience would come out to be and how long would we be able to bear the dark and so hesitated in investing much at the start. We were billed and handed over the receipt.

Now, the server asked us to lose our mobile phones and any other glass items we had on us - watches, g, bags. This is what caused the hustle as we - and everyone else today - is not used to a life away from mobiles. Also, when you are asked to part with those belongings, your first reaction is to be alarmed. What was going to happen inside was a question on everyone's mind. The staff explains that the step is a precaution to ensure that the items do not get damaged inside the restaurant as you find your way in pitch dark. That makes sense! They provide you with a locker to store your stuff while you are gone and you carry your keys with you. What if they have another key outside? With an anxious mind, we decide to go with it.

Once ready, guests with similar choices are lined together outside the restaurant gate - remember the human trains from the school time. A staff gets to the front - this staff member is one from inside the restaurant - and ushers you inside acting as the locomotive for the train. As soon as you cross the doors - which close behind you - you are struck with darkness - actual darkness, one where closing or opening your eyes has no meaning - one where you are as good as without this sense of sight. The staff guides you through the darkness to your table and helps you sit - all through oral cues and a slight hand-holding if at all required. As you (un)settle in your seats, you cannot help wonder the sudden change in how your brain works. When there are no visual signs, your brain starts picking other cues and all the voices suddenly seem to mean something. Your other sense organs start becoming more sensitive to provide you with external inputs. You in a sense start living the life of a visually challenged person - it isn't easy - IT IS VERY VERY DIFFICULT.

A server comes to your seat and provides you with an overview of the facility and the story of the German mastermind who introduced this idea. The aim was to provide meaningful employment to the differently abled within the society. They are even happy to answer all your queries regarding the place and its significance. Our server Taobji was definitely patient with us and responded to all our queries. Post this, the food is served on the table. Again the server guides you through the meals and the items on the table. He also provides you relative location of the food on the table and helps you navigate in the unknown environment. The food was delicious and the spread was generous but that is not what was top on our mind then.

Once the meal is over the act repeats and you are ushered out of the restaurant in your own world. As you work your eyes to adapt to then new-found light, you cannot help imagine how difficult life is for those who are not as blessed as some of us. The things that we take for granted suddenly start gaining value at this moment.

Have you been to any such restaurant which is unique in itself? What's your take on the concept? Did the article make you feel like visiting here once? Drop in all your views, appreciation and critic in the comments and we would appreciate each of it. Let's work on getting you something new from another corner of the world and till then enjoy what is already on the portal. Cheers !

Dialogue in the Dark Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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